Conservative commentators and bloggers react with disgust to the DC Comics superhero’s decision.
Superman threatens to renounce his US citizenship in the latest issue of Action Comics. Photograph: AP
By David Batty
After years of declaring he stood for “truth, justice and the American way,” Superman has provoked the ire of rightwingers by threatening to renounce his US citizenship.
In the latest issue of Action Comics, which went on sale on Wednesday, the Man of Steel decides to take the step after he intervenes in a protest against the Iranian government.
After the Islamic regime brands his non-violent protest as an act of war taken on behalf of the US president, the DC comic hero says he will renounce his citizenship before the United Nations.
“I’m tired of having my actions construed as instruments of US policy,” he says.
Although Superman never actually renounces his citizenship in the story, conservative commentators reacted with disgust.
The publisher behind The Bookseller is launching an ambitious new quarterly consumer book magazine and website this June, We Love This Book.
The magazine will look at what to read each season. Distributed free to readers via independent bookshops, small chains like Foyles, libraries and festivals, it will have a 100,000 circulation and a website hub for readers. The magazine will also be available on subscription. Sam Husain, chief executive of Foyles, said: “This is a great initiative and much needed in the present climate. I am sure it will increase awareness of books and the latest titles.”
By Charlotte Williams
Faber is marking 100 years since the birth of William Golding by issuing centenary editions of both Lord of the Flies and The Inheritors.
The books will carry a golden stamp announcing the anniversary, and will have specially commissioned introductions. The Shining author Stephen King has penned the introduction to Lord of the Flies, which was first published in 1954. Meanwhile, Professor John Carey has written the introduction to The Inheritors.
The latter was Golding’s second novel, first published in 1955, with a plot that revolves around the extinction of the last tribe of Neanderthals.
By Katie Allen
Pan Macmillan has signed a six-book deal with London self-help bookshop The School of Life.
Editorial directors Liz Gough and Cindy Chan bought world rights in the series directly from The School of Life.
The “intelligent, rigorous, well-written” self-help titles are lined up for spring 2012, and will be written by authors including the founder of The School of Life, philosopher Alain de Botton, Simon Blackburn and John Armstrong. They will discuss issues such as work, sex, emotional health and self-esteem.
The School of Life, set up in 2008, runs seminars, talks and events from its shop in London’s Bloomsbury on topics such as “How Necessary is a Relationship” and “A Voyage In Epicuriosity”. The School also has a weekly column in the Observer.
The end of books is good for writers and readers
By Tom Keane
BORDERS in Boston’s Back Bay is closing, a familiar story in a recession that has laid waste to many once-prominent names. But this time, something’s different.
When most stores fail, we understand that to be some combination of bad luck, poor management, and hard times. It’s tough luck for investors and employees, but not really for us as consumers. We know we’ll always have places to shop for clothing, furniture, electronics, and the like.
Not so with books. When Borders shutters, Boston will have, permanently, one fewer bookstore. Barnes & Noble won’t be eyeing its empty site on Boylston Street as a possible location for expansion. Nor will we see any new bookstore start-ups. There are a great many business ideas where some entrepreneur can strike it rich; bookselling is no longer one of them.